On December 16th, 2018, Miss Universe 2018 which was held in Thailand aired on TV. The women were so beautiful, but there was something that made this year stand out more than any other. Miss Spain makes history, as the competition’s first transgender contestant. Angela Ponce, a model from Seville, beat 22 other contestants to be named Miss Spain. She tried to compete in the 2015 Miss World competition but learned that the pageant had a rule that prohibited trans women from winning. I cannot even imagine how that must have made Angela feel.
“It crushed me,” she said in an interview with Time last month. “I had to go on and perform, and it felt horrible. But after I got to the Miss Universe final, Miss World changed their rules too. I changed the rules.” Miss Universe lifted its ban on transgender competitors in 2012. Ponce had said that she would compete because it was something that she always wanted to do since she was a little girl. She did not let anything or anyone stop her. Ponce told Time. “I’m showing that trans women can be whatever they want to be: a teacher, a mother, a doctor, a politician and even Miss Universe.” I think that is so powerful of her to stand up for herself and all the other trans women out there. Although she did not make it past the first round of the competition, she had a special tribute during the finals.
A video was played for everyone, showing her journey, as well as how she was bullied as a child. At the end of that, Ponce walked out on stage and held her Spain sash above her head while she clutched her heart.